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Tag Archives: medicine

Mechanism that regulates lung function in disease Birt-Hogg-Dube syndrome found

Mechanism that regulates lung function in disease Birt-Hogg-Dube syndrome found

Researchers at Penn Medicine have discovered that the tumor suppressor gene folliculin (FLCN) is essential to normal lung function in patients with the rare disease Birt-Hogg-Dube (BHD) syndrome, a genetic disorder that affects the lungs, skin and kidneys. Continue reading

Unraveling what’s behind the sniffles, hoping for treatment

Unraveling what’s behind the sniffles, hoping for treatment

Scientists at the University of Colorado School of Medicine have shed light on one of the most common of ailments — the runny nose. Your respiratory tract is under constant attack and the nose is the first line of defense. Often, especially as the weather warms, the assault comes from allergens, which cause the body to fight off a perceived threat Continue reading

Chips with olestra cause body toxins to dip, study finds

Chips with olestra cause body toxins to dip, study finds

According to a clinical trial led by University of Cincinnati researchers, a snack food ingredient called olestra has been found to speed up the removal of toxins in the body. Results are reported in the April edition of the Journal of Nutritional Biochemistry. The trial demonstrated that olestra — a zero-calorie fat substitute found in low-calorie snack foods such as Pringles — could reduce the levels of serum polychlorinated biphenyls (PCBs) in people who had been exposed to PCBs. Continue reading

Bad penny: Cancer’s thirst for copper can be targeted

Bad penny: Cancer’s thirst for copper can be targeted

Drugs used to block copper absorption for a rare genetic condition may find an additional use as a treatment for certain types of cancer, researchers at Duke Medicine report. The researchers found that cancers with a mutation in the BRAF gene require copper to promote tumor growth. These tumors include melanoma, the most dangerous form of skin cancer that kills an estimated 10,000 people in the United States a year, according to the National Cancer Institute. Continue reading

Stressful environments genetically affect African American boys

Stressful environments genetically affect African American boys

Stressful upbringings can leave imprints on the genes of children as young as age 9, according to a study led by Princeton University and Pennsylvania State University researchers. Such chronic stress during youth leads to physiological weathering similar to aging. A study of 40 9-year-old black boys, published in the Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences , shows that those who grow up in disadvantaged environments have shorter telomeres — DNA sequences that generally shrink with age — than their advantaged peers Continue reading

Cancer cells may respond to mechanical force

Cancer cells may respond to mechanical force

The push and pull of physical force can cause profound changes in the behavior of a cell. Two studies from researchers working at the UNC Lineberger Comprehensive Cancer Center reveal how cells respond to mechanical manipulation, a key factor in addressing the underlying causes of cancer and other diseases. Continue reading

Possible target to combat muscle wasting

Possible target to combat muscle wasting

The pathological atrophy of skeletal muscle is a serious biomedical problem for which no effective treatment is currently available. Those most affected populations are the elderly diagnosed with sarcopenia and patients with cancer, AIDS, and other infectious diseases that develop cachexia. A study by scientists at the Institute for Research in Biomedicine (IRB), headed by Antonio Zorzano, also full professor of the University of Barcelona, reveals a potential therapeutic target to tackle muscle wasting in these risk populations Continue reading

DNA modifications measured in blood signal related changes in the brain

DNA modifications measured in blood signal related changes in the brain

Johns Hopkins researchers say they have confirmed suspicions that DNA modifications found in the blood of mice exposed to high levels of stress hormone — and showing signs of anxiety — are directly related to changes found in their brain tissues. The proof-of-concept study, reported online ahead of print in the June issue of Psychoneuroendocrinology , offers what the research team calls the first evidence that epigenetic changes that alter the way genes function without changing their underlying DNA sequence — and are detectable in blood — mirror alterations in brain tissue linked to underlying psychiatric diseases. The new study reports only on so-called epigenetic changes to a single stress response gene called FKBP5, which has been implicated in depression, bipolar disorder and post-traumatic stress disorder Continue reading

Living organ regenerated for first time: Thymus rebuilt in mice

Living organ regenerated for first time: Thymus rebuilt in mice

A team of scientists at the University of Edinburgh has succeeded in regenerating a living organ for the first time. Continue reading

Potential therapeutic target for deadly brain cancer

Potential therapeutic target for deadly brain cancer

Researchers from the Geisel School of Medicine at Dartmouth will present a scientific poster on Tuesday, April 8, 2014 at the American Association of Cancer Researchers Annual Meeting in San Diego, CA. The research identifies a potential characteristic for predicting outcome in a deadly form of brain cancer known as glioblastoma multiforme. Existing therapies based on genetic information have failed to effectively treat glioblastomas Continue reading